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Larmour set for Leinster game time as Schmidt releases players for provincial duty

But Joey Carbery remained with the Ireland squad this week.

Larmour has been training with Leinster this week.
Larmour has been training with Leinster this week.

JORDAN LARMOUR IS one of several players Joe Schmidt has released for provincial duty this weekend, with the 20-year-old in line to feature for Leinster in their crucial Guinness Pro14 clash with Scarlets on Saturday.

Larmour, who came off the bench to make his Test debut in last weekend’s win over Italy, was absent from Ireland’s squad session in Athlone earlier and has trained with his province all week.

Leinster host the defending Pro12 champions at the RDS in a defining fixture at the top of Conference B, and Leo Cullen’s side are set to be boosted by the return of Larmour and Sean Cronin.

But Jordi Murphy, Fergus McFadden and Joey Carbery all remained with the Ireland squad in the Midlands, meaning the latter will not get the chance to get minutes at out-half under his belt ahead of the visit of Wales on 24 February.

For Larmour, it will be an opportunity to get back on the field after a couple of intense weeks inside the Carton House bubble leading up to his much-talked about debut at international level.

This season, the fullback/winger has scored six tries in 14 Leinster appearances and should he feature on Saturday, will be part of an exciting backline also set to include the likes of McGrath, Ross Byrne, Dave Kearney, James Lowe and Rory O’Loughlin.

But when asked if the former St Andrew’s College man was being put under too much pressure, Schmidt said: “I don’t think so. I’ve got to know Jordan over the last few years and he’s not a guy who puts pressure on himself.

Joey Carbery Joey Carbery trained with Ireland today. Source: Billy Stickland/INPHO

“He just loves playing the game and is excited about every challenge that comes up. Yes, I’m sure he was nervous; first Test match and debut at the Aviva in a Six Nations game. That’s big but at the same time what was good for Jordan was that he had Keith Earls at 13 and Rob Kearney at 15 so that gives you a bit of security.

“When he came on, I think it was 35-0 so the game isn’t in the balance so it was a pretty good opportunity to feed him in the environment.”

Elsewhere, Ian Keatley, Rory Scannell, John Ryan and Dave Kilcoyne are all expected to be available for Munster’s away trip to Cardiff Blues but Chris Farrell won’t travel as he prepares to deputise for Robbie Henshaw against Wales next week.

Kieran Marmion and Quinn Roux have been named among the Connacht replacements for Friday night’s visit of Zebre to Galway having both come off the bench against Italy at the Aviva Stadium.

Both Cullen and Johann van Graan will name their respective teams at 12pm tomorrow.

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Schmidt’s Ireland blow off the cobwebs with high-intensity session against the U20s

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Ryan Bailey

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